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Facebook finds itself in a revolution

Facebook displayed on a laptop screen.

Facebook has really caught on in Tunisia and in the weeks and months leading up to the change in government there, protesters used it to plan events, exchange information, post photos and video, and generally keep in touch. But as things reached a boiling point, some Tunisian Facebook users were reporting that their accounts were being accessed or even deleted. Speculation led to the Tunisian government accessing the Internet service providers and attempting to silence citizens.

Facebook responded by moving Tunisian accounts to a more secure setting and then put up roadblocks for accounts that were suspected of being compromised. These events cast a light on what Facebook's role is going to be in the next major wave of protests or even revolutions. It's almost like a utility now even though it's not headquartered within the countries that are using it. What can Facebook do to protect its interests without taking sides in a conflict?

We talk to Alexis Madrigal who covered the situation with Facebook in Tunisia for The Atlantic. We also check in with Jillian York at the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard.

Also in this program, forget 3D, the new revolution is 1D! Well, maybe not. But we do play a 1D video game.

About the author

John Moe is the host of Marketplace Tech Report, where he provides an insightful overview of the latest tech news.
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